Vogue Arabia backs Saudi Princess on cover to mark lifting driving ban on women

In the recent turn of events or better to call the month of trailblazing for women in Kingdom, Vogue Arabia came up with an unprecedented move with garnishing the presence of Saudi Princess Hayfa bint Abdullah Al-Saud on this month’s magazine cover.  Not to forget, the longstanding ban on women driving is all set to be waved off on June 24. With all thanks to the hundreds of women activists, who strived to pull off this gender discriminating ban prevailing since long in the kingdom.

The women activists across the kingdom have been very much vocal about the ban which restrains them from getting behind the wheels. The lifting of the ban wasn’t as easy as pie, it took strenuous efforts of the activists and that too spread over the years. What was more to the struggle of these ladies was many of them were arrested for protesting and were also accused off going against the kingdom’s policies. Finally, the hard work paid for them and King Salman took to the mic to announce that they would soon be lifting the ban from women driving in Saudi Arabia.

The thing which can’t be negated here is that getting Saudi Princes Hayfa bint Abdullah Al-Saud on Vogue Arabia cover wasn’t taken positively by many of the commoners and even the notable critics. The latter went on commenting upon this cover as the ‘deaf tone’ as telling that princes weren’t the real face behind the lifting of this ban as hundreds of women activists put in their hard work for that. What gets this initiative gloomier is that dozens of women activists, who voiced in support to lift the ban, are still in custody of the kingdom. Not to forget, around dozens of such activists have also been arrested in the recent weeks.

So with the struggles of this ban-lift in custody getting the princess as the real face of driving ban lift in Saudi Arabia was questioned by many. But here’s Vogue Arabia has defended the move by terming that the royal women magnified their message or cause.

The Vogue Arabia editor-in-chief Manuel Arnaut also self-praised his magazine for bringing issues to the light.  Arnaut in a statement to BBC said: “Informing and initiating healthy debates around meaningful topics are a priority for us, and we, therefore, decided to emphasis this with an iconic and powerful image that is completely fulfilling its purpose: bring focus to the region and to the role of women in Saudi society.”

The princes whose presence on cover triggered the new debate said that: “Personally, I support these changes with great enthusiasm.”




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